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Kiesling is one of Detroit’s newest bars best described as a trendy space with accents derived of Old West saloons. Set in a historic building from the 1800s, patrons can enjoy classic and modern cocktails with pithy names in this neighborhood favorite.


BY: Alex Temblador Contributing writer

W C. Fields – you probably don’t know his name, but he was a comedian and actor of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and he once said something we might all relate to: “If I had to live my life over, I’d live over a saloon.”

In his time, the saloon was a place for men to come together, hash out problems, drink away sorrows, share their troubles, make plans for the future or business, and do it all with a stiff drink in their hand. Today, the saloon has turned into “bars,” but some places are looking to bring the old watering holes into the forefront again, and if you’re looking for a place like that, your best bet is Detroit’s Kiesling.

W.C. Fields was a notorious drinker, but we like to think he found something like a home in saloons, a place where he could relax and let himself be.

The tavern sits in a building that dates to 1890 and began as a general store, owned by Joseph Kiesling, and later turned into a café with a saloon. The digs changed names and owners, and had a short stint as an apartment building, but thanks to new minds behind the helm, Kiesling is becoming a neighborhood favorite once again.

The 64-seat bar has the vibe of a new American saloon, complete with a historic four-panel, hand-painted canvas mural of a woodsy nature scene, polished terrazzo floors, and original wood wainscoting. The antique back bar and a 14-seat bartop made of oak bring forth memories of the historic saloon when drinking was simple and a part of the community mesh.

Head to Kiesling today and you’ll discover a mix of classic and modern cocktails and a rotating menu of special drinks with notable names like “I’ll Tell You When You’re Older” and “Traditional Medicine.” With the occasional food pop up on-site, you can grab a drink and something tasty to grub while chopping it up with the comrades in this pure, yet stylish space.

W.C. Fields was a notorious drinker, but we like to think he found something like a home in saloons, a place where he could relax and let himself be. Kiesling is bringing that experience to the 21st century, and when inside, you’ll want to raise one up and toast to W.C. Fields and the men of saloon days past.


Kiesling is a neighborhood saloon set in the evolving Milwaukee Junction neighborhood. They’ve recruited seasoned Detroit bartenders who sling out an array of cocktails faster than a six shooter in the wild west

The building dates back to 1890, so, best believe there are stories tattooed all though the walls of this haunt

If you’re running early, stroll over to Third Man Records, which is just a few blocks away

The saloon has a seasonal menu, changing up the concoctions but always keeping the classics. Check it out here